I met a very dear friend tonight at a local coffee shop-- a friend who just two years ago lost her dad to pancreatic cancer. I needed to talk to her, to hear about her process of saying good-bye to a parent. I needed to know that life will go on, that there will be joy again. She let me talk and cry and show all of my emotions, and she empathized with me because she has been there. She warned me that there is no road map for grief. Everyone's journey will be different, and that I shouldn't rush the process. Meeting with her was a definite bright spot in my day.
Another sweet friend emailed me the lyrics to a song that have spoken volumes to my soul as I've listened to it and reflected on the words these last few days. It is called "The Valley Song" and the chorus says, "I will sing of your mercy that leads me through valleys of sorrow to rivers of joy." I know that this season of mourning and walking through the darkest valley I have ever known is just that-- a season. I will always miss my mom, but my pain will eventually ease and change shape. It will not be such an open wound, but rather a faded scar. And eventually, as God heals my heart, I can experience a river of joy.
Oh Lord, I know that this valley of sorrow will be followed by a river of joy one day. Thank you for walking with me down this long, twisty road. I know I am not alone.